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, written by Jeremy. Read the commentary.

My Dad, brother, brother-in-law and I just finished a week-long canoe trip around the Bowron Lakes circuit in B.C.. It was wonderful.

The lakes run along the foot of several mountain ranges. Peaks rise up on either side to tower amongst the mist. Snow hugs the valleys. Each morning it spreads out – white and shinning against the bare mountain tops. Water rattles down in cascades and tumbles into the lakes as waterfalls and cold creeks. Moose, osprey, bald eagles, king fishers, squirrels, moles, mice, owls, deer, trout, salmon, muskrats, beaver and even a cougar watched nonchalantly as we slid past.

The water is clear, green, and clean. We drank right from the creeks. Peering over the edge of the canoe, it’s often clear for several meters. Plants dance on the lake bottom, far below the surface. That wholesome quiet and untouched clarity touch something soulful. When the bottom of the lake drops away and the canoe slips out into the darkest depths of the water, the heart begins to sing again.

Long hours in the canoe were somehow shaped and stretched … time slips into the water and dissipates. It comes back as something rich and immense. Wispy minutes that slip by untouched as I sit at work became treasured moments. I kept looking around, turning to burn into memory the places we were passing. It felt like searching for a last drop of dark, peaty scotch or longing for some forgotten fragrance or finding a picture of a great friend I hadn’t seen for years – a deep, melancholic joy that true beauty was pouring past us.

Within those days a lot of clutter organized itself into well-defined files, doned starchy dress suits, and plunged overboard to join time at the bottom of the lake. Weight trailed off into the canoe’s wake. To do lists, tactful refusal letters, and feigned interest crowded together with a host of other appalling propositions and roared off over a cliff with the river. Stress trickled into oblivion – ground to nothing by a million years of silence.

I began to feel strong again. By the end of the trip I was sprinting around like a tireless little boy, spinning donuts on the beach. I raced straight up a steep hill to where I could watch the sunset across the lake, the mountain tops were dappled by the light. Their reflection rippled on the surface.

My hands are usually numb. A consequence of long hours at a desk, elbows drilling into the table top, and endlessly tense shoulders. I always feel weak, light-headed, and tired. It all went away.

On the last day we decided to set up a swing so we could throw ourselves out into the lake. While building the platform I picked up a gigantic rock, set it up on several others, and wandered off looking for more before realizing how different I had begun to feel. I felt huge.

I felt, still feel, enormous. Not bulging muscle – but magnificent. Like a lion. Or a cedar tree. Or the throaty, roaring river rushing out over the cliffs. I feel as I ought to.

Why is it so easy to forget our strength? Aren’t you dying to remember?

Commentary

Excellent prose! It’s evident the experience was well worth it! Welcome back from your “low-tech sabbatical” and try maintain the gain!!!

Maintain the gain. Funny.

So little to do here. I’ve returned to the gym now. Run at least 40 minutes at least twice a week. I’m being careful about the things I eat. The regular hoops we all hop through when inspired by change.

But it’s hard to replicate or maintain the depth and richness of that experience. That constant, unrelenting, unobtrusive invitation to undo.

Such rich imagery- it felt real! I could feel my own shoulders relax and ease out as I read it.